i’m fortunate every so often to have the luxury of leaving the office in the early afternoon to relax at a local pub until someone in the group decides it’s time to get home and grill something. yesterday was one of those days, and our chosen destination turned out to be monk’s pub, on lake street in the loop, where upon walking up to the door you’d think you were entering an old western film or you’d think the odds of the place having closed down since your last visit were much higher than that door in front of you actually opening and revealing a place you’d spend more than five minutes in.

alas you do open the door, and inside is a pretty warm and welcoming hole-in-the-wall pub with deep cherry wood floors and rafters and a long cherrywood bar and wooden booths and basically wood everywhere. it feels like a log cabin, and throw your peanut shells on the ground, not the bar, the bartendress said.

our server was young and friendly but my god her hair. it was huge. it looked at first like unfortunate bedhead, but turned out to be styled in a way to make it as large, fluffy, and odd as possible. the regulars seemed to love her, which i’m sure was largely based on age and the long island ice teas.

we had some bass and some hefeweizen and some peanuts and threw the shells on the floor and headed out, headed home. i caught the brown line barely and road home in the setting sun with belle & sebastian rolling through a set of calm and deliberate tunes about love and waitresses.

the chicago brown line in the early evening is a beautiful trip if the sun is feeling friendly.

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